Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Another mother's funeral

My friends lost their mother last weekend: a Saturday morning, just like mine. Her funeral is today, but I don't think I can handle going. She was 55 years old! Mother of 7. Uterine cancer that got into her lymph system. My mom was 64, young enough, but at least she got to see all of her children married and have their own children. My dear Ruth and Aaron: my heart aches for you, my soul cries for you. Welcome to the crappiest club on earth.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Liv is Five!

Olivia turned 5, and she is never as bouncy or bubbly or hyper as on her "special day," (of which she frequently reminds us). In fact, every time someone else got a chance to have a photo taken, she'd say with those turned-down eyebrows, "It's not HER special day!"

Now I'm no expert on black and white photography, so usually when you see one that's b/w, it means I really screwed up the photo and had to save it! Outdoor on-camera flash photography still eludes me, but I didn't feel like setting up my studio lights: I hardly felt like doing anything!

One more birthday to go this season, and Levi is chomping at the bit for it to finally get here. Except for this baby's birthday, which gives me fits of anxiety just thinking about it. My sister had her baby today! Same day as Liv's birthday: suddenly it seems so much more real, and I'm kind of freaking out about it. Any day now, maybe this weekend, and Liv thinks her new little sister is her very own birthday gift!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

15 more minutes

Mommy was on TV again for Total Mommy Fitness: the trainer Tatum joked that as their current token pregnant lady I've become their mascot, LOL! Baby due in just a few days, so I think that title will be pretty short lived. This time I got to talk, and got a nasty profile shot exercising at 9 months pregnant: just cruelty! The kids had a blast playing in the sprinklers at the park, but only Julia was brave enough to come exercise in front of the camera with me.
Click here to see video, only works using IE (no Firefox, sorry guys!)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I'm a wedding photographer. Stop laughing

I shot my first wedding last weekend. When she first asked me, I laughed and said, "You realize that's about 2 days before I'm due?" She said they weren't going to hire a photographer, so I figured even if I had a baby or felt like crap and bailed out, or totally screwed up every photo, nothing lost! While none of the photos will find their way onto the cover of Bride magazine, and I did get a lot of "wadders," (what do you call digital photos you just delete? Deleters?) I was really pleased that we captured some good shots of them! Even better, Ryan gave my kids piano lessons this summer, and we all enjoyed the chance to get to know him better. I'm really excited for both of them. If only everyone's marriage could be as good as mine and Troy's the world would probably spin around faster or something else along those lines.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Who is that ugly old lady?

My birthday! Troy was in Alaska most of the day, I picked him up from the airport around 3pm. I made my own cookie cake and cookie-dough ice cream, which my kids thought was sad! But he wasn't here to do it for me, and I'd rather eat cookies than whine about making it myself. All was not lost, for tired as he was, he rounded up the kids and gave me the rest of the day off my swollen pregnant feet!

32 shouldn't feel old, I don't feel old, I don't think I look old, but sometimes...those snapshots never do me any favors. You'd think Troy would want to me me look good, but I think he just barely graduated from the "say cheese and push the button" photography. It's fun he's finally getting into it. We're both artistic science nerds, so it's right up our alley.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Alaska AGAIN

Troy left for Alaska Friday afternoon: he picked me up from the airport on Thursday at 6pm, and by 11am the next morning we were on our way back. I challenged him to catch 200 lbs of fish, as if he's some sort of power lifter in the Olympics. Sadly, he wouldn't do the puffing breathing exercises those lifters do before trying to accomplish such a goal, so I'm unsure if the challenge will be met. If only he'd not been too proud to breathe like an idiot. I'm about to have a baby, and so weird breathing does not phase me in the least. Hopefully he brings back a lot of fish and doesn't smell like any. It's just a cheap ploy by me to stretch my grocery budget: I have to pay for groceries, but he has to pay for his own trip, so it's like he just threw $1,000 worth of fish into my freezer that I didn't have to "pay" for. Yeah, what's ours is ours, whatever, it's all about what Quicken says!
2005 Halibut haul

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Idaho alone

I traveled to Idaho by myself last week to teach a Photoshop tranining seminar to the tech teachers at Malad High School (yeah, I know you've never heard of Malad, and probably not even Idaho!) Since Troy's parents live only 2 hours from Malad, and moved back from China the NIGHT before I arrived, I stayed with them. Luckily, or maybe not, perhaps just coincidentally, Troy's younger brother and his wife and 2 kids were up for the weekend to bless the new baby, and Troy's sister and her husband and 3 kids were visiting on a summer trip. With 3 brothers that live locally, it was a house full of people! Lots of cousins for my kids to play with had any of them been there.
We had Christmas in July, which was actually kind of sad seeing what we give up in family relationships as the price for living so far away. But weighing pros and cons I know Austin is the best place for our family, and while it is sometimes a heavy price not having any extended family or old friends, it's still worth it because Troy's job is such a rare blessing. How many grown men actually get paid a 40-hour week for about 10 actual hours? Well, 20 hours on a busy week.

And just because Shaun asked, the only Photoshop here is pasting the top of Russ's head back on. The tripod got bumped, I guess, and we had a little shrinkage. He's too tall anyway!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Swim Team

With nearly every large neighborhood in the area home to its own Jr. Olympic pool, swim team starts young here! This is Taya and Levi's first year, and they're having a great time. Neither of them are any good (I hope they don't read this for many years, but it's sadly true :0), but they love the meets and the excitement. Levi has won 3 ribbons, 2 for swimming on a relay team with really fast boys, and the other for coming in first (in the "slow" heat, but it's a ribbon!) I'm so proud of their hard work, and that they're swimming in suits I sewed for them. I've found a new love for swimming in the past several years, learning the strokes from the internet so I can swim laps for exercise, and I really enjoy watching their meets.

Both of their coaches swam in the Olympic trials, 1 coach advancing to the semi-finals in 2 events, which really lit the kids' fire for swimming! It's great they're staying active, learning, and interested. They've both improved drastically since the beginning of the season, though they're ready for it to be over. One more regional meet, and they're very excited both to swim and to be done!